Viking Cruises Coronavirus update
Viking Cruises suspended passenger shipping operations fleetwide (ocean ships and riverboats worldwide / Europe-Asia-Africa) by cancelling all voyages with pre-scheduled departures in the period March 12 through September 30, 2020 (initially through April 30, June 30 and August 31). Operations are planned to resume on October 1. The summer program's cancellation was mainly due to ongoing travel restrictions in Europe, as well as Canada's and Australia's ban on cruise shipping. Viking River Cruises' Russia program 2020 was cancelled entirely.
All affected bookings received a 125% refund in FCC (future cruise credit) with rebooking or 100% monetary refund. Fully refunded (100% in FCC) were also all prepurchased through Viking packages and services. The FCC is valid for 24 months (after cancellation), for any Viking cruise itinerary (river-ocean-expedition) and fully transferable.
All bookings made by April 30, 2020, received Risk-Free Guarantee that allows penalty-free cruise cancellation up to 24 hours prior departure. The cancellations and rebooking promos affected both Viking Cruises-owned subsidiary companies and travel brands - "Viking Ocean Cruises" and "Viking River Cruises".
Viking Cruises fleet
Review of Viking Cruises
IMPORTANT: Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Viking Cruises suspended passenger shipping operations fleetwide (ocean ships and riverboats worldwide / Europe-Asia-Africa) by cancelling all voyages with pre-scheduled departures in the period March 12 through September 30, 2020 (initially through April 30, June 30 and August 31). Operations are planned to resume on October 1. The summer program's cancellation was mainly due to ongoing travel restrictions in Europe, as well as Canada's and Australia's ban on cruise shipping. Viking River Cruises' Russia program 2020 was cancelled entirely.
All affected bookings received a 125% refund in FCC (future cruise credit) with rebooking or 100% monetary refund. Fully refunded (100% in FCC) were also all prepurchased through Viking packages and services. The FCC is valid for 24 months (after cancellation), for any Viking cruise itinerary (river-ocean-expedition) and fully transferable. All bookings made by April 30, 2020, received Risk-Free Guarantee that allows penalty-free cruise cancellation up to 24 hours prior departure.
This is CruiseMapper's page for the three Viking Cruises subsidiary companies - the sister-brands Viking RIVER, Viking OCEAN and Viking EXPEDITIONS, their fleets (riverboats, liners, polar ships), cruisetour itineraries, destinations, homeports, cruise tracker. We have listed all Viking ships as schedules (itinerary calendars with prices) and current position tracking maps. Similarly named is the Finland-based cruiseferry company VIKING LINE (1959-founded).
CruiseMapper's Viking ship schedules show departure and call ports (including towns and cities visited on shore excursions), themed voyages (holiday, itinerary themes) and port times (arrival-departure / port stays and overnights). All ship schedules also show how much will cost you to travel with Viking Expeditions (Arctic-Antarctica, Great Lakes USA and Canada), Viking Ocean (global) and Viking River - on the European waterways Danube, Rhine, Main, Mosel, Seine, Rhone, Saone, Douro, also in Asia (Mekong, Irrawaddy, Yangtze), Egypt (Nile, Lake Nasser), Ukraine (Dnieper), Russia (Volga, Svir, Neva, Lake Ladoga, Lake Baikal) and in the USA (Mississipi).
Viking Flusskreuzfahrten AG (Viking River Cruises, website) is also the parent company of KD Deutsche Rheinschiffahrt GmbH, which is subsidiary of Koln-Dusseldorfer (aka KD Cruises, fka KD Line). KD Line is an 1826-founded, Cologne-based company with a fleet of 14 cruise vessels (including "event ships" and a paddle steamer) deployed in Germany, on the rivers Moselle, Rhine and Main. Koln-Dusseldorfer was acquired by Viking in 2000.
Viking River Cruises holds 1/2 of North America's market. In the period 2011-2015, the company spent over USD 600 million on promotions. In May 2017, Viking celebrated its 20th anniversary. By the year 2027, the company's 16-ship ocean fleet will have a combined capacity of 16,930 berths, ranking Viking Ocean world's largest cruise company with ship capacity under 1000 passengers.
IMPORTANT: Since August 2018, Viking Cruises (both brands/river and ocean) is an adults-only company that doesn't allow minor passengers (under 18 years of age) on its vessels.
NEWS: In early-April 2019, Viking and China Merchants Group (China's first commercial corporation/1872-founded) unveiled a plan to launch a new cruise line (joint venture company) for the Chinese market. China Merchants Group's shipbuilding subsidiaries will design and construct the new ocean liners for the new company. As of 2019, Viking Cruises fully owns and operates a fleet of 6 ocean liners plus 72 riverboats, almost all of which are of the patented Longship-Class.
NEWS: On April 3, 2020, was the official launch of Viking.TV (website address https://viking.tv/). The new (company-exclusive) online TV channel provides enrichment content and real-time video streaming from worldwide locations. Viking.TV targets primarily non-cruising people (those staying home) rather than travellers. The new channel also livestream sessions with various guests (experts, scientists, celebrities) and allows real-time interaction by submitting comments and questions.
As a division of Viking Cruises, Viking River Cruises has an estimated European river market share of ~49%. Cruisetour itineraries range from 7 to 23 days and include as regions the European rivers Rhine, Main, Danube, Saone, Rhone, Seine, Elbe and Douro, also Ukraine's Dnieper, Russia's Volga, China's Yangtze, Burma's Irrawaddy and Cambodia-Vietnam's Mekong. Most voyages are cruisetours and include both river cruising, land tours, and hotel stays. All itineraries have at least one tour or guided shore excursion per day (complimentary / cruise fare-inclusive).
Viking River Cruises provide travellers with top-quality cruise tours via world's newest and most innovative fleet of newbuild riverboats with patented "longship" design.
On March 20, 2013, the newly renamed company "Viking Cruises" launched 10 ships at one time, thus entering Guinness Book of World Records. Beginning on March 17, 2014, Viking christened 16 new boats over a 24-hour period, again setting an industry record. Viking named two more ships in Oporto (Portugal) on March 21.
On March 22, 2015, Amsterdam (Holland) witnessed the naming ceremony of 12 new longships. Their godmothers were from USA (Los Angeles), UK and even Russia. In 2015, Viking River Cruises fleet expanded to 64 vessels, 40 of which patent-design longships (capacity 190 passengers, introduced in 2012).
During the 2015 christening, 8 longships were in Amsterdam. The other 4 longships were named via live video link with the shipbuilding shipyard in Neptun Werft (Rostock, Germany). Two of the longships (Astrild and Beyla) are specifically designed for Elbe River. These boats are with modified longship design ("baby Longships") with only 2 decks (1/4 lighter) and capacity 98 guests (46 cabins).
Viking European river cruises for Chinese travellers
In Fall 2016, Viking became the first European river cruise company offering itineraries on dedicated to Chinese travellers riverboats. The company dedicated two longships, on which the primary onboard language is Mandarin.
The first longship's 2016 itineraries (starting November 10) are on Rhine River, between homeports Amsterdam and Basel. The second longship's 2017 itineraries are on Danube. On both riverboats, all the hotel staff is Mandarin-speaking, all the signage is in Mandarin (from menus to toiletries). The onboard cuisine is traditional Chinese (dishes prepared by Szechuan and Cantonese chefs) plus European dishes by Michelin-star chefs.
All excursion programs ashore are organized by Viking River Cruises. Each ship has all 8 Mandarin-speaking tour guides assigned to 25-passenger groups. The Rhine cruise program includes a shipboard overnight in Amsterdam and 3 days (2 shipboard overnights) in Basel with Lake Lucerne tour. In Strasbourg, passengers take the high-speed TGV train to Paris. Optional (exclusive) deals include private jet travel (to any airport in Europe) for 1 day at the price of USD 30,000 pp. Cruise fares start from around USD 4,300 pp.
Cruise Lines International Association/CLIA's projections for 2020 are that the number of Chinese travellers to Europe will be the same (or larger) in comparison to US travellers.
Viking River Cruises line is a global travel corporation (Viking Flusskreuzfahrten AG) headquartered in the USA. And it all started in the not so distant 1997 with the establishment of the modest Viking River brand founded by a consortium of Scandinavian and Dutch investors, with only 4 second-hand riverboats bought in Russia.
In the mid-1990s, company's founder, Torstein Hagen enjoyed a river cruise in Russia and was so excited that decided to create his own river cruising company. He started in 1997 by purchasing four Russian vessels. In 2000 Viking acquired Koln-Dusseldorfer (KD River Cruises). The KD purchase included an extremely valuable asset - the landing stages, and now Viking Cruises owns docks in more cities in Europe than it stops in. This ensures prime docking locations, easy passenger access and ability to walk into town directly.
In 2000 Viking enlarged into the US market by establishing company's US headquarters in Los Angeles, California. In April 2004 Viking expanded in China with cruise tours on Yangtze River. They additionally include hotel stays in a variety of cities, mainly in Shanghai and Beijing. As a result of newbuilds and acquisitions, in 2014 the company had a river fleet of 52 vessels with a total of 9200 berths.
Worldwide, Viking Cruises hires over 2,500 staff and crew. Line's river cruises are targeted primarily to English-speaking travellers in the UK, North America and Australia. Nowadays, Viking manages the world's largest fleet of river cruise vessels, ever.
In 2015, Viking's European river cruise sales became a bit slower than expected. The slower growth was partially related to the reduced demand for cruises in Russia. Viking's Ukrainian and Russian ships were laid up, but their staff remained on the payroll. Until the 2015 slowdown, the company reported a steady growth of over 30% per year for the period 2010-2015. Company's turnover (gross revenue) from both river and ocean shipping operations for 2015 was about USD 2 billion.
In October 2017, Viking River Cruises announced a shipbuilding order for 7 new riverboats. Of those, 6 are Longships (Einar, Sigrun, Sigyn, Tir, Ullur, Vali) plus one modified Longship design Douro River cruiser (Helgrim). The newbuilds were launched in 2019 and christened together on March 19. The 7-ship "virtual" naming ceremony was via satellite connections and held in 4 riverports - Basel Switzerland (Sigrun and Einar), Rostock Germany (Ullur and Sigyn), Brunsbuttel Germany (Vali and Tir) and Oporto Portugal (Helgrim).
For 2020 are planned the launches and inaugurations of 6 more Longship-Class vessels. Of those, 4 are with smaller capacity (168 pax) and deployed year-round on Seine River in France (Fjorgyn, Kari, Radgrid, Skaga) and 2 are standard (190 pax) and deployed on Rhine River (Gersemi, Hervor).
Viking River Cruises deals include staterooms, onboard dining, most cultural activities, most shore excursions. Beer, soft drinks and wine by the glass are included with lunches and dinners. Viking ships are nonsmoking (interior) with a dedicated smoking area on Sundeck. Since the focus is on the port cities and river cruising, activities onboard are geared towards enrichment lectures.
In 2016-Q3, Viking Flusskreuzfahrten AG terminated the charter deals with Pericon AG (shipowner) and stopped to operate the riverboats Viking Spirit (now Seine Comtesse), Viking Sun (now Rhein Melodie), Viking Helvetia (now Rhein Symphonie), Viking Pride (now Bijou du Rhone) and Viking Danube (now Filia Rheni 2).
Viking Cruises Longships
In 2009, the newly-launched Viking Legend became company's first riverboat fitted with hybrid (diesel-electric) engines. These new type marine engines use 20% less fuel than the conventional ones. The engine rooms are noise-insulated and this reduces noise and vibration. Environmental impact is further reduced through the ship's membrane water treatment plant. In 2011 Viking Prestige was launched - the next Viking new vessel with the "green" features of Viking Legend.
In 2012 were introduced the "Viking Longship" class of vessels. All of these really long ships have the same/hybrid engine powerplant. They are environmentally friendly, with a patented interior design creating 2-room suites, numerous French Balcony staterooms, full-size rooms, and verandas. 2/3s of Longship's cabins are with French balconies, verandas, or both. Other features include the indoor-outdoor "Aquavit Terrace" (designed for outdoor relaxation and also suitable for alfresco dining), large "Explorer Suites" with wraparound balconies (aft / stern location), an organic herb garden and solar panels (on the Sun Deck).
Next YouTube video is about the original longships of the Vikings.
The first 6 Longships were launched in 2012 and collectively won "Best New River Ship" award. 10 more were launched in 2013, and additional 18 launched in 2014 (including 2 smaller ships purpose-built for Douro River in Portugal). All Viking Cruises Longships are named after Norse mythology gods and entities.
Viking Mississippi River Cruises (USA)
The company plans to add cruise ships on Mississippi River (USA). However, the process is slowed due to issues regarding the so-called "Jones Act" (Merchant Marine Act from 1920). It imposes restrictions on where USA-based ships can navigate and how to be staffed.
Company's plan to enter the US river cruising market was officially announced in 2015. In October 2018 was announced as a potential start-up (with Mississippi-based boats) the year 2021. By 2027, Viking plans to increase river's annual passenger shipping capacity to over 100,000 (compared to 2018's 50,600) by deploying six Viking riverboats. The 7-day cruise itineraries will include roundtrips from New Orleans, as well as one-ways between New Orleans and Memphis TN, and between St Louis MO and Minneapolis-Saint Paul MN.
Viking's USA-based riverboats will be newbuilds (vessel building cost ~USD 90-100 million per unit), each with 5 decks, passenger capacity 386, all-balcony staterooms (193 cabins total), an aft-located infinity pool, bow ramp (for passenger landings). All the 6 ships will be built and owned by ECO Shipyards (subsidiary of Edison Chouest Offshore - 1960-founded as "Edison Chouest Boat Rentals" marine corporation) and operated under charter by Viking Cruises USA.
The first boat (Viking Mississippi) starts operations in August 2022. Bookings opened in 2020 - on March 31 (past customers) and on April 15 (general public). Currently, Viking River Cruises USA offers 4 itineraries, themed as:
- "Heart of the Delta" (8-day from New Orleans to Memphis) - prices started from GBP 3390 pp
- "America's Heartland" (8-day from St Louis to St Paul) - from GBP 4790 pp
- "Southern Celebration" (8-day roundtrip from New Orleans) - from GBP 3390 pp
- "America's Great River" (15-day from St Paul to New Orleans) - from GBP 8690 pp
The Viking Mississippi itinerary program offers visiting 7 states (Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Missouri, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota) and the port cities Baton Rouge, Darrow, New Orleans, St Francisville, Natchez, Vicksburg, Memphis, Hannibal, St Louis, Burlington, Dubuque, Davenport, La Crosse, Red Wing, St. Paul.
In March 2016, Viking Ocean Cruises confirmed the order of three more ocean vessels, which was increased to four in 2017 (December). By 2023, the newbuilds (by Fincantieri Italy) will expand the fleet to 10 liners.
- The "9-vessel fleet" news was announced at the float-out ceremony of Viking Sky (March 2016). In April 2017, Fincantieri and Viking Cruises signed the MoA for the building of two vessels (fleet's 7th and 8th) with the option for two additional ships.
- The "10-vessel fleet" news was officially announced in December 2017, when Viking Cruises signed the shipbuilding order for the 2 optional vessels.
- The "16-fleet" news was announced on March 6, 2018, when Viking Cruises entered an agreement with Fincantieri for 6 more ocean vessels. They will be delivered in the period 2024-2027.
- Viking Ocean's fleet consists of 10 liners - Viking Star (2015), Viking Sea (2016), Viking Sky (2017), Viking Sun (2017), Viking Orion (2018), Viking Jupiter (2019), Tellus and Venus (2021), TBN1 (2022) and TBN2 (2023). Each ship has capacity 928 passengers and 465 crew, and building cost around USD 400 million (EUR 340 million).
Among the vessels' innovative marine technologies are energy-saving hybrid engines, top-deck solar panels, pollution-minimizing exhaust system. Thess ships also use seawater as a lubricant for their propeller shaft bearings. This technology lowers the vessel's maintenance costs and also the risk of sea pollution. Replacing the biodegradable oils, the water is being directly discharged into the sea.
All Viking Ocean ships offer destination-rich itineraries marked by "small ship cruise" tour and onboard experiences. Compared to similar-class vessels operated by other companies, Viking Ocean itineraries feature fewer sea days, longer port stays and many overnight ports of call.
On May 17, 2013, the company announced the launch of its "Viking Ocean" division. This was the reason for modifying the parent company's name to "Viking Cruises". The Viking Ocean brand was introduced in 2015 with Viking Star, which started operations with mostly one-way itineraries in Baltic Sea (Scandinavia, Russia) and Mediterranean Sea.
After Walt Disney Cruise Line (with MS Disney Magic, 1998-launched), Viking became industry's second cruise brand company to launch a purpose-built passenger liner (Viking Star). All Viking Ocean ships are from one series - same-designed, with same layouts, interiors and amenities, featuring spacious lounges, multiple dining options (several al-fresco / outdoor deck venues), 3-story Atrium, premium theater/show lounge, Sun Deck (with 2 swimming pools), Nordic-design Spa, Gym and sports area, Snow Room, duty-free boutique shops. The infinity pool (resistance swimming pool) on each ocean ship was a "first at sea" facility,
In mid-September 2016 was announced that TPG Capital and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board intend to make a joint investment of USD 0,5 billion in Viking Cruises. The deal resulted in combined 17% stake in Viking. The funding helped the company's growth, particularly on the ocean cruising market, and also strengthened its balance sheet as it branched into China (since 2016).
- Viking Ocean's port agent for China is Wallem Ship Agency China. The company is responsible for vessels berthing (cruise terminal arrangements), logistics, freshwater supply, customs, crew changes, passenger disembarkation/embarkation.
- Wallem China (part of Wallem Group) has a network of 28 offices across Asia, of which 8 are in China, The shipping agency handles annually over 500 cruise ship calls. The list of its services also includes drydock vessel support, newbuilding supervision, lifeboat servicing, equipment testing.
In 2017, Viking signed a sponsorship with National Geographic Society for shooting NatGeo's "Genius" (anthology series).
MV Viking Star became world's ever-first ocean ship with a "snow room". Must be noted, that the 2013-launched Viking Grace (2800-passenger cruiseferry operated by Viking Line) was the first-ever passenger ship with a Snow Room. Viking Ocean ships' Snow Grotto is a wellness retreat with powdery snow falling down from the ceiling. The experience (touted beneficial to the body's blood circulation) includes heating in a sauna (steam bath), then walking into this small room. It is fitted with benches and has dark stone walls illuminated by blue light. The snow on the floor is kept at sub-freezing temperatures. This Arctic-themed facility is part of the ship's thermal suite (within the spa complex). This relaxation area has 1 hot tub, sauna room, heated ceramic loungers, therapeutic showers, salt-water thermal pool. Snow Grotto access is complimentary to all passengers.
On Apr 4, 2018, Viking Cruises and VARD (Norwegian subsidiary of the Italian shipbuilding company Fincantieri) signed LOI (Letter of Intent) for designing and building 2 new-class ocean liners.
- Contract's potential value is approx NOK 5 billion (USD 611 million = EUR 525 m) for both ships, and also includes optional two more vessels of the same series.
- The shipbuilding contract was officially signed on July 23, 2018.
- The liners will be developed by VARD Design (Norway) with hulls constructed in Romania (VARD Tulcea). If started, the project will result in building a new fleet of ocean liners.
Viking's World Cruise record (2019-2020)
On August 31, 2019, Viking Sun started its 245-day Around The World voyage spanning 6 continents, 51 countries, 111 call ports. The London City roundtrip itinerary was officially listed as world's "longest continuous passenger cruise" in the Guinness Book of World Records.
Viking Ocean's 8-months long "Ultimate World Cruise" (westbound) included a Transatlantic crossing (RepositionCruises.com) and passing through Suez Canal. Prices started from ~USD 90,000 per person (double-occupancy cabin rates).
Viking OCEAN cruise deals
Just like on all Viking riverboats, Viking Ocean deals are inclusive of popular amenities, such as Wi-Fi Internet, alcohol (beer and wine at lunch and dinner), shore excursions (at least one in every port of call along the itinerary), spa usage (thermal pool, sauna, hot tub, Snow Grotto room (snow falling from its ceiling), Gym (fitness center), library (with books reflecting the cruise itineraries), 24-hour room service; absolutely all meals at any of the onboard restaurants; beverages (cappuccinos, espresso drinks), self-service laundry; in-room movies on demand, lectures, airport to cruise port transfers. At additional cost are only spa massages, beauty salon services; specialty beer, premium alcohol (wine and spirits), and some shore excursions.
In early 2018 was announced, that the Viking Cruises company raised USD 975 million through a private placement of USD 275 million (5,875% secured notes due in 2027) plus USD 675 million (5% secured notes due in 2028).
- The note proceeds were used for repaying all the company's loans used to finance the building of the Viking Ocean liners Star and Sky, as well as for repurchasing Viking Sea (operated on sale-leaseback agreement).
- As of January 2018, Viking Cruises operated a combined fleet of 62 riverboats plus 4 ocean ships. As ownership, 1/5 (20%) of the company is owned by TPG Capital (US investment company) and CPP Investment Board (CPP=Canada Pension Plan). Company's Net revenues for FY2017 were estimated at about USD 1 billion.
Viking Cruises' ocean liners made the company world's largest "small ship cruise" brand with a dominant share on the luxury travel market (23,9 % by year 2020). In 2019, the parent company also created the brand "Viking Expeditions" with a newbuild fleet of two small-sized expedition vessels - Viking Octantis (2021) and Viking Polaris (2022), plus an option for 2 more same-designed units.
Viking Expeditions (as a travel brand) was officially launched on January 15, 2020, with cruising operations starting in January 2022. Viking Expeditions ships are Norway-flagged (registered in Longyearbyen Spitsbergen), smaller-sized (GT 30150 tons, LOA length 203 m, beam/width 24 m) and with reduced passenger capacity (378 each, plus 260 crew/staff) in comparison to Viking Ocean's liners (930 passengers plus 465 crew/staff each). The boats are constructed by the Norwegian shipbuilder VARD (subsidiary of Fincantieri Italy). Vessel's hull and superstructure are assembled at the shipyard in Tulcea Romania, then towed to VARD Soviknes Shipyard (Alesund Norway) for outfitting.
Traditionally for an expedition vessel, each Viking Expeditions ship has its own fleet of inflatable Zodiacs (speedboats used for passenger tendering and shoreside cruising), rigid-hulled inflatable boats (large-capacity unsinkable boat with a rigid bottom) and sea-kayaks. The ship design features several spacious open-deck areas, including Promenade Deck and bow-located Observation Deck (forward on Lounge Deck). Most passenger staterooms (189 total) are with French balconies, excluding only Deck 6's Suites (OS-Owner, ES-Explorer). Cabin sizes vary between 21 m2 (Nordic Balcony / French Balcony) and 114 m2 (Owner Suite with 73 m2 Terrace Garden).
Viking's expedition fleet will operate mainly polar cruises - in the European Arctic (Svalbard Islands and Arctic Russia, roundtrips from homeport Tromso Norway) and Antarctica (roundtrips are from homeport Ushuaia Argentina, with fly-cruise packages from Buenos Aires / included an overnight hotel stay prior departure and return flights). Other destinations are the Great Lakes (USA) and Canada.
Signature onboard facilities available on each Viking Expeditions boat include:
- Explorers Lounge (Decks 5-6, bow-facing) is 2-deck, circular-shaped, glass-covered and walled indoor observation lounge with wraparound windows. Explorers Bar is on Deck 5.
- Aula Auditorium (Deck 2 aft) is a glass-walled auditorium (with tiered seating) hosting lectures, media presentations, itinerary-themed port talks, live entertainment programs. The lounge has floor-ceiling and wall-to-wall windows (providing 270-degree unobstructed views) and an outdoor deck seating (Finse Terrace). Aula Auditorium also doubles as Cinema, being fitted with a retractable screen (covering the entire window wall towards the stern) and latest sound and visual equipment. Aula Auditorium provides direct access to Finse Terrace, which makes it an indoor-outdoor observation lounge.
- Finse Terrace is an outdoor lounge (adjacent to Aula Auditorium) with comfortable seating (padded sofas) and heated by firepits (heated lava rocks). Finse Terrace also provides alfresco dining and drinking when weather permits.
- Aft-located (at the stern) indoor-outdoor pool deck lounge (Aquavit Terrace) with 3 infinity pools - positioned side by side and covered by a retractable glass roof. Each of the swimming pools is at a different temperature. The mid-pool has indoor-outdoor swimming experience.
Dining venues include The Restaurant (fine dining, regional cuisine specialties, classic dishes), The World Cafe (market-style buffet restaurant with open kitchen, live cooking station, bakery, grill stations, seafood bar with premium sushi, international food choices), Mamsen's Deli Restaurant (Deck 5, traditional Scandinavian dishes, Italian cuisine specialties) plus Room Service (24-hour, complimentary). Other venues include The Living Room, The Library Lounge, Auditorium Theater (Conference Room / Cinema), Expedition Central (Photography Studio / Photo Gallery / Coffee Bar), Nordic Spa Badestamp (Hot Tub Room), wellness complex (Hydrotherapy Pool, Spa Lounge, Gym, Saunas, Massage Rooms).
The Hangar is an aft-located indoor marina for launching the smaller-sized RIBs (rigid inflatable boats). The launch platform features a 26 m (85 ft) wide rollers-covered slipway (boat ramp) that allows safe and sheltered embarkation on the RIBs inside the cruise ship.
Ship's expedition equipment is provided complimentary and to all passengers (regardless of cabin category). It includes Zodiacs (military-type rigid inflatable high-speed boats used for landings and coastal cruising), 2-seater sea-kayaks, two RIB boats (12-seats each), two mini-submarines (6-passenger, with revolving seats, spherical windows / 270-degree), Expedition Kit (cold-weather boots, waterproof pants, snowshoes, trekking poles, skis, binoculars). Each tour boat is fitted with latest Safety Equipment (satellite phone, VHF radio, ropes, life jackets, survival kits).
Exclusively for Viking Expeditions voyages, Viking Cruises partnered with Cambridge University's Scott Polar Research Institute (Polar Museum) that specializes in polar researches and glaciology. Via this exclusive partnership, on every voyage scientists from the Institute undertake on the ship and also share with the cruisers their expertise. Another exclusive partnership was signed with Cornell Lab of Ornithology (unit of Ithaca NY's Cornell University) which specializes in global bird research. Cornell Lab's ornithologists are also always present on the ship to interact with the passengers. Viking Cruises also partnered with NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). NOAA scientists are present on all Great Lakes USA voyages to conduct researches (on local weather changes and ecosystems) and present lectures themed on the Great Lakes region.
Itinerary of Viking Cruises
Here you can compare all Viking cruise ships (RIVER, OCEAN, EXPEDITIONS) and their itineraries, destinations, and departures dates. CruiseMapper provides you with free of charge schedules with listed cheapest ticket prices per person per itinerary.
In 2013, the Viking line announced the launch of its new brand "Viking Ocean Cruises". The Viking Ocean line's product was introduced in May 2015 with the launch of its first vessel MV Viking Star.
In 2013 Viking River Cruises operated a 37 ships fleet. Till the end of 2014, the line's fleet numbers 52 riverboats. All ships have been fully renovated or newly built since 1999. Viking cruise ships on the European rivers have a capacity of 190 passengers, which is typical for the line. Viking cruise ships in Russia feature an average of 200 and over, the ships in China - up to 246. Note: "Longship" is new patented ship design. "Modified" longships are smaller in size.
Viking river cruise itineraries range from 7 to 23 days. They are operated along the:
- European rivers Rhine, Main, Danube, Saone, Rhone, Seine, Elbe, and Douro
- Asian rivers - Ukraine’s Dnieper, Russia’s Volga, China’s Yangtze, Myanmar’s Irrawaddy and Vietnam’s Mekong.
- Some voyages (few in Europe, Egypt, Southeast Asia, and China) are "cruise tours” marked. They include both the river cruising portion and hotel stays.
All itineraries have at least one tour or guided shore excursion per day - all included in the fares.
- Viking Mississippi (2022) - 5-deck riverboat operated in the USA under charter
- Viking Aegir longship - the Rhine, Main, and Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria
- Viking Alruna longship - Rhine - Germany, France, Switzerland
- Viking Akun - Volga, Svir, and Neva - Russia
- Viking Alsvin longship - the Rhine, Main, and Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria
- Viking Astrild longship-modified - Elbe River (Germany, Czech Republic)
- Viking Atla longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Belgium
- Viking Baldur longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria
- Viking Bestla longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, France, Switzerland
- Viking Beyla longship-modified - Elbe River (Germany, Czech Republic)
- Viking Bragi longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, France, Switzerland
- Viking Buri longship - Saone and Rhone - France
- Viking Delling longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Belgium
- Viking Egil longship - Rhine and Danube - Austria, Germany, France, Hungary, Holland, Switzerland
- Viking Einar longship - TBA (Moselle, Rhine and Dutch waterways)
- Viking Eir longship - Rhine River - Germany, Holland
- Viking Eistla longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria
- Viking Embla longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria
- Viking Emerald - Yangtze - China
- Viking Forseti longship - Dordogne, Garonne, and Gironde - France
- Viking Freya longship - Danube - Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia
- Viking Gefjon longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Hungary, Austria, Germany, Slovakia, Czech Republic
- Viking Gullveig longship - Rhine - Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland
- Viking Heimdal longship - Saone and Rhone - France
- Viking Helgi - Volga river - Russia
- Viking Helgrim - Douro - Portugal, Spain
- Viking Hemming - Douro - Portugal, Spain
- Viking Herja longship - Rhine - Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland
- Viking Hermod longship - Saone and Rhone - France
- Viking Hild longship - Rhine - Holland, France, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland
- Viking Hlin longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria
- Viking Idi longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria
- Viking Idun longship - Danube - Germany, Hungary, Austria, Slovakia
- Viking Ingvar - Volga river - Russia
- Viking Ingvi longship - Rhine - Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland
- Viking Jarl longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Belgium
- Viking Kadlin longship - Seine River - France
- Viking Kara longship - the Rhine, Main, and Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria
- Viking Kvasir longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, France, Switzerland
- Viking Legend - Danube - Austria, Hungary, Germany, Slovakia
- Viking Lif longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Belgium
- Viking Lofn longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Switzerland, Holland, Hungary, Austria, Germany, France, Slovakia, Czech Republic
- Viking Magni longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, Belgium
- Viking Mani longship - Rhine River - the Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany, France
- Viking Mekong - Mekong - Vietnam, Cambodia
- Viking Mimir longship - Rhine, Main, Danube - the Netherlands, Austria, Slovakia, Germany, Hungary
- Viking Modi longship - Rhine, Main, Danube - the Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, France
- Viking Njord longship - Danube - Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia
- Viking Odin longship - Danube, Moselle, Rhine, and Main - Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, France, Czech Republic, Luxembourg
- Viking Osfrid - Douro River - Portugal and Spain
- Viking Prestige - Danube - Austria, Hungary, Germany, Slovakia
- Viking Ra (2018) and Viking Osiris (2020) - Nile River in Egypt
- Viking Rinda longship - Danube - Austria, Germany, Hungary, Serbia, Romania, Croatia, Bulgaria
- Viking Rolf longship - Seine River - France
- Viking Rurik - Volga river - Russia
- Viking Sigrun longship - TBA (Moselle, Rhine and Dutch waterways)
- Viking Sigyn longship - TBA (Rhine and Moselle)
- Viking Sineus - the Dnieper - Ukraine
- Viking Skadi longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria, France, Switzerland, Belgium
- Viking Skirnir longship - the Rhine, Main, and the Danube - Holland, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Belgium and Slovakia
- Viking Tialfi longship - Rhine - Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland
- Viking Tir longship - TBA (Danube, Rhine and Dutch waterways)
- Viking Tor longship - Rhine - Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland
- Viking Torgil - Douro - Portugal, Spain
- Viking Truvor - Volga river - Russia
- Viking Ullur longship - TBA (Danube)
- Viking Vali longship - TBA (Rhine and Danube)
- Viking Var longship - Rhine - Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland
- Viking Ve longship - the Rhine, Main, and Danube - Holland, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia
- Viking Vidar longship - the Rhine, Main, and Danube - Holland, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia
- Viking Vilhjalm longship - Danube
- Viking Vili longship (Rhine-Main-Danube)Holland, Germany, Austria, Hungary, and Slovakia.
- (2020-built) longships on Seiner River in France - Viking Fjorgyn, Viking Kari, Viking Radgrid, Viking Skaga
- (2020-built) longships on Rhine River - Viking Gersemi, Viking Hervor
- (2020-built) RheinGalaxie Eventschiff (KD Line, charter cruises between homeports Cologne and Dusseldorf)
- MS Steigenberger Omar El Khayam (Lake Nasser, Egypt) is a Steigenberger-owned ship operated by Viking under a charter.
- MS Amarco Antares (Nile River, Egypt) is an Amarco-owned hotelship operated by Viking under a charter.
MS Mayfair (Nile River, Egypt) is a privately-owned hotelship operated by Viking under a charter.
Century Legend and Century Paragon are the Yangtze River cruise ships in China. Both are privately owned and operated by Viking under a charter. These riverboats are also chartered by other major European lines, like AmaWaterways, Avalon, and Uniworld.
In Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos) Viking River Cruises charters riverboats from the Pandaw fleet - including the ships Katha Pandaw (as Viking Mandalay), and Orient Pandaw (as Viking Orient).
Viking Cruises USA
Starting operations in 2022 with 1 ship (out of all 6 planned newbuilds), Viking's USA-based river cruise ships will be 5-deck, with all-balcony staterooms, aft-located infinity pool, bow ramp (for passenger landings). All the 6 ships will be built and owned by ECO Shipyards (subsidiary of Edison Chouest Offshore) and operated under charter. The 8-day cruisetours include roundtrips from New Orleans, as well as one-ways between New Orleans and Memphis TN, and between St Louis MO and Minneapolis-Saint Paul MN.
Viking Mississippi cruise itineraries visit seven US states (Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Missouri, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota) and the riverport cities Baton Rouge, Darrow, New Orleans, St Francisville, Natchez, Vicksburg, Memphis, Hannibal, St Louis, Burlington, Dubuque, Davenport, La Crosse, Red Wing, Minneapolis-St Paul.
On July 2, 2020, Viking Cruises announced that new 2023 sailings of its Mississippi River cruises were on sale. The first custom vessel of the company, Viking Mississippi, is scheduled to debut in August 2022 and sail cruises on the Lower and Upper Mississippi River, between Saint Paul Minnesota, and New Orleans Louisiana.
The first river cruises of Viking in the United States had been highly anticipated when they were announced in April 2020. The strong demand led the company to open additional 2023 sailings sooner than expected.
Viking Cruises' arrival to the Mississippi River represents a major commitment to economic and tourism development in a lot of communities along the river, with the new sailings expected to bring over 5,800 passengers to the region in 2022 and more than 17,600 during the first full cruise season in 2023.
2022-2023 Viking Mississippi Voyages include:
- 15-day America’s Great River from New Orleans to St. Paul on nearly the entire length of the Mississippi River (multiple sailing dates in June, September, and October 2023) prices start at US$11000 per person, with discounted airfare from US$200 per person.
- 8-day America’s Heartland from St Louis MO (Missouri) to St. Paul on the Upper Mississippi (multiple sailing dates in August-September 2022; additional sailings now available in July, August, and September 2023) prices start at US$4600 per person, with discounted airfare from US$200 per person.
- 8-day Heart of the Delta from New Orleans to Memphis Tennessee on the Lower Mississippi (multiple sailing dates in October-November 2022; additional sailings now available in May-June 2023) prices start at US$4200 per person, with discounted airfare from US$200 per person.
- 8-day Southern Celebration round-trip from New Orleans, visiting Vicksburg Mississippi exploring the Lower Mississippi (multiple sailing dates in November-December 2022; additional sailings now available in January 2023) prices start at US$3700 per person, with discounted airfare from US$200 per person.
Viking Cruises Egypt
Starting in 2018, Viking River Cruises is the first non-domestic company licensed to operate cruise ships on the Nile River in Egypt. The itineraries are operated by the new boats Viking Ra (March 2018) and Viking Osiris (September 2020). Previously, Viking Cruises Egypt operated the Nile River and Lake Nasser cruise tour itineraries with two chartered ships (Steigenberger Omar El Khayam and Mayfair). The Viking riverboats Ra and Osiris cruise only on the Nile portion (roundtrip from Luxor) with fly-cruise packages inclusive of two flights (Cairo-Luxor-Cairo). Viking's Nile River cruise tour is themed "Pharaohs and Pyramids".
The 12-day itinerary incorporates 7-day cruising on Nile River and starts with a 3-night hotel stay in Cairo and tours to iconic attractions like Grand Egyptian Museum, Great Pyramids of Giza, Mosque of Muhammad Ali. Cruise tourists then fly to Luxor to visit Karnak and the Temples of Luxor before boarding the Viking cruise ship for a 7-night Nile cruise to Aswan and back. Tours include a private visit to Nefertari's tomb (Valley of the Queens) and excursions to Khnum Temple (Esna) and the Dendera Temple complex (Qena). A visit to a Nubian village is also included.
See below the list of main Viking Ocean itineraries as themes and ports of call:
- Mediterranean cruises leave from: Turkey (Istanbul), Italy (Venice, Rome /port Civitavecchia), Spain (Barcelona).
- Northern Europe/Baltic cruises depart from Norway (Bergen) and Sweden (Stockholm).
- All voyages include overnight stays in both ports (of departure and final disembarkation).
Repositioning cruises are officially themed as:
- Northbound Atlantic: "VIKING EMPIRE" (Istanbul-Stockholm)
- Southbound Atlantic: "PASSAGE THROUGH WESTERN EUROPE" (Bergen-Barcelona), "SCANDINAVIA TO SPAIN" (Stockholm-Barcelona)
- Baltic-UK: "BALTIC JEWELS and THE MIDNIGHT SUN" (Stockholm-London) and "INTO THE MIDNIGHT SUN" (Bergen-London).
Viking Baltic itineraries are operated in the summer, themed as "Viking Homelands" (14 nights in length). Baltic Sea routes offer visits to 8 different countries, with a total of 11 cruise tours (all complimentary, included in the Viking Baltic deals prices). Viking Mediterranean itineraries are themed as:
- (Barcelona to Rome, 7-nights) "Romantic Mediterranean" (visits 4 countries, included 8 land tours)
- (7-nights) "Mediterranean Getaway" (visits 3 countries, included 6 land tours)
- (9-nights) "Empires of the Mediterranean" (visits 5 countries, included 7 land tours)
- (12-nights) "Mediterranean Odyssey" (visits 6 countries, included 10 land tours)
- (14-nights) "Mediterranean Explorer" (visits 5 countries, included 12 land tours).
In November 2018, Viking Cruises announced an 11-day ocean cruise itinerary named "Greek Odyssey". It is expected to allow passengers to explore the Aegean Sea's ancient empires of antiquity during the quiet season. Voyages aboard the Viking Sea are roundtrips from Athens and begin January 2021. The itinerary includes 3 new ports of call for the cruise line: Nafplio, Volos, and Thessaloniki in Greece, as well as a visit to Ephesus marking Viking's return to Turkey.
Highlights of the Greek Odyssey itinerary include:
- Volos, Greece is a cosmopolitan port city, and the region was once considered the playground of the gods. Passengers can experience the exciting scenery of Meteora, with its medieval monasteries, or explore the religious center of Dion, situated on the foothills of Mt Olympus.
- Thessaloniki, Greece is the 2nd-largest city in the country and offers a mix of modern life and ancient culture. While in port, passengers can walk the waterfront promenade with its many restaurants and cafes, or head outside the port city to the remains of the Macedonian kingdom of Alexander the Great.
- Nafpilo, Greece is set between the Bay of Argos and breathtaking mountains. Travelers can explore its Byzantine churches and Venetian homes, take a drive to the imposing fortress towering over the city, Palamidi, or travel to the Peloponnese peninsula.
- Ephesus (Kusadasi), Turkey is among the world's best-preserved cities of antiquity. Passengers can visit the remains of Byzantine Basilica of St John, enjoy sights like the massive Great Theater and Library of Celsus, and see the modest home where the mother of Jesus, Mary, lived out her final days.
- Scenic cruising: Mt Athos: On sea days, passengers will sail past Mt Athos, the "Holy Mountain" (UNESCO Site, the spiritual capital of Orthodox Christianity). The soaring peaks of the peninsula are home to twenty monasteries where monks work to preserve a vast collection of liturgical works and art.
The cruise fare includes balcony cabins for all passengers, complimentary shore excursions in all ports, all onboard meals, complimentary wifi, wine and beer with lunch and dinner, access to spa's Thermal Suite, and 24-hour room service.
Viking Cruises' 7th ocean ship, Viking Venus, is due to join the fleet early 2021. The 930-passenger newbuild is scheduled to spend her inaugural season in Northern Europe and Scandinavia, with itineraries including In Search of the Northern Lights, Into the Midnight Sun, British Isles Explorer, and Viking Homelands. The cruise line is also expanding its Mediterranean offerings, with 5 new itineraries that include calls in Istanbul. The new 8-day Ancient Mediterranean Treasures is scheduled to sail between Athens and Istanbul, with overnights in both cities.
Travelers looking for an extended experience in the region are able to choose longer versions of the itinerary, such as:
- 15-day Ancient Adriatic Treasures, sailing between Venice and Istanbul
- 15-day Ancient Mediterranean Antiquities, sailing between Rome and Istanbul
- 22-day Iconic Mediterranean Treasures, sailing between Barcelona and Istanbul, or
- 29-day Mediterranean’s Iconic Shores, also sailing between Barcelona and Istanbul and including visits to Croatia and Montenegro.
Viking World Cruises 2020
Viking Cruises also released new itineraries ranging between 38-82 days, that join to form the 245-day Viking Ultimate World Cruise, roundtrip from London UK departing August 2019. This is the 3rd world cruise onboard Viking Sun.
- 2020, January 4: 38-day South Pacific and the Land Down Under, from Los Angeles to Sydney, visiting 7 countries, and featuring 15 guided tours and 2 overnight stays. Prices from US$9,995pp in a Balcony Stateroom, US$25,995pp in a Penthouse Balcony Stateroom.
- 2020, February 11: 82-day Australia, Asia, Europe and Beyond, from Sydney to London UK, visiting 21 countries, and featuring 39 guided tours and 8 overnight stays. Prices from US$38,995pp in a Balcony stateroom, US$47,995pp in a Penthouse Balcony Stateroom.
Central and South American itineraries
Viking Cruises launched 3 new Central and South American itineraries, including 22-day Cuba, Panama, and the Pacific, 22-day Southern Atlantic Crossing and 18-day South America and Chilean Fjords. The unveiling of the new cruises gives passengers the opportunity to explore a range of exciting hotspots in Central and South America.
The 22-day Southern Atlantic Crossing from Barcelona to Buenos Aires (vice versa) visits the cities of Montevideo and Buenos Aires. After Rio de Janeiro and coastal Recife, passengers cross the Atlantic to the West African city of Dakar and Casablanca. Guests also explore Granada's Andalusian charm and Barcelona's fabled architecture. The voyage departs March 15, 2020, featuring 8 guided tours and covering 6 countries. Prices start from US$7,500 per person in Veranda stateroom.
The 18-day South America and the Chilean Fjords cruise from Buenos Aires to Santiago (vice versa) visits Port Stanley, home to over 1 million penguins, before reaching Ushuaia. Sailing through Strait of Magellan, as well as passing blue-tinted icebergs and rugged mountain peaks, passengers also get a taste of Santiago. The voyages depart through February 2020 and offer 8 guided tours in 4 countries. Prices start from US$9,600 per person in Veranda stateroom.
The inaugural cruise itineraries of both expedition vessels are 13-day polar voyages - one in Antarctica, the other in the European Arctic. Viking's Arctic cruises (to Svalbard Islands and Arctic Russia) are roundtrips from homeport Tromso Norway and priced from USD 14,000 per person (double-occupancy balcony cabin). Viking's Antarctic roundtrips are from homeport Ushuaia Argentina, with prices starting from USD 15,000 pp (fly-cruise packages from Buenos Aires with included overnight hotel stay prior departure and return flights to Europe-USA-Canada-Australia).
Exclusive promo deals for past customers and travel agents were opened for bookings made in the period October 10 - December 31, 2019. Next are listed all Viking Expeditions cruise itineraries by length and theme.
- 44-day "From the Arctic to Antarctica" (from Tromso to Ushuaia)
- 19-day "Antarctic and South America Discovery" (from Buenos Aires to Rio de Janeiro)
- 18-day "South America and Antarctic Discovery" (from Rio de Janeiro to Ushuaia)
- 15-day and 13-day "Antarctic Adventure" (from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia)
- 15-day "Atlantic and Equator Sojourn" (from Cork to Rio de Janeiro)
- 13-day "Arctic Adventure" (roundtrip from Tromso Norway)
- 13-day "Viking's Northern Isles" (from Tromso to Cork)
- 13-day "Canadian Discovery"(from NYC New York City to Toronto)
- 10-day "Caribbean Connections" (from Bridgetown to NYC New York)
- 8-day "Niagara and the Great Lakes" (from Toronto to Milwaukee)
- 8-day "Undiscovered Great Lakes" (from Thunder Bay to Milwaukee)
- 8-day "Great Lakes Explorer" (from Milwaukee to Thunder Bay)
Viking's Great Lakes cruises visit Canada's Ontario state (Thunder Bay, Toronto, Welland Canal, Niagara Falls, Point Pelee) and USA's Minnesota-Michigan-Wisconsin states (Detroit MI, Alpena MI, Mackinac Island MI Lake Huron, Apostle Islands MI, Houghton MI, Traverse City MI, Milwaukee WI Lake Michigan, Duluth MN) and feature passing through Soo Locks (Lake Superior - Lake Huron).
Viking's Canada cruises visit NYC New York, Halifax NS, Gulf of St Lawrence (scenic cruising, Cape Breton National Park), Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island), Magdalen Islands Quebec (scenic cruising), Cap-aux-Meules (Quebec), Sept-Iles Quebec, Saguenay Quebec (zodiac cruising through Saguenay Fjord), Quebec City, Trois-Rivieres Quebec, Montreal Quebec, Seaway Locks (transit to Lake Ontario), Toronto Ontario.
Viking's Antarctic cruises are inclusive of 2 domestic charter flights (between Buenos Aires-Ushuaia) and an overnight hotel (in Buenos Aires / pre-cruise). Signature destinations include Beagle Channel (Glacier Alley) and Drake Passage, Cape Horn, Half Moon Island, Deception Island (Whalers Bay), Brown Bluff, Wiencke Island (Damoy Point), Lemaire Channel, Petermann Island, Cuverville Island, Neko Harbor (Antarctic Peninsula),
Viking's Arctic cruises visit Tromso Norway, Svalbard Islands Norway, Polar Ice Cap (scenic cruising), Spitsbergen Island (Barentsburg, Smeerenburg, Barentsburg, Alicehamna/Alice Harbour, Hornsund, Nordfjorden, Liefdefjorden), Bjornoya (Bear Island), Barents Sea (cruising).
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